Hong Kong retail sales jumped in September amid the continued recovery of incoming tourism and government initiatives to stimulate the economy.
Revenue from jewelry, watches, clocks and valuable gifts climbed 27% year on year to HKD 4.31 billion ($551 million) for the month, according to data the government’s released Wednesday. Retail sales across all product categories rose 13% to HKD 31.76 billion ($4.06 billion).
The growth also reflected a favorable comparison with the same period last year, when the municipality was still dealing with strict Covid-19 restrictions. At that time, the number of visitors to Hong Kong was extremely low. The municipality derives a large portion of its luxury revenue from tourists — primarily from China — who come there to purchase goods. Hong Kong’s border with the mainland reopened at the beginning of the year.
For the first nine months, proceeds from jewelry, watches, clocks and valuable gifts soared 59% to HKD 44.89 billion ($5.74 billion). Total retail sales for the period grew 19% to HKD 302.29 billion ($38.64 billion).
In September, 2.8 million visitors arrived in Hong Kong, compared to 66,037 during the same month of 2022. Of those who traveled to the municipality in September, 2.2 million were from the mainland, versus 51,276 the year before.
“The value of total retail sales continued to grow visibly in September over a year earlier, thanks to the continued revival of inbound tourism and private consumption,” a government spokesperson said. “Further recovery of visitor arrivals should benefit the retail sector. Continued improvement in household income and the government’s various support initiatives…should also provide support.”